Ben and Marian Rolf rent a grand old country mansion as a summer getaway for themselves, their twelve year old son Davey, and Ben's Aunt Elizabeth. They feel they can't turn down the rent deal offered to them by the house's owners, siblings Roz and Arnold Allardyce, despite some reservations. First amongst those reservations, they are to take care of the house on their own, which Ben feels is too big a job, especially for Marian and the interior housekeeping. In Marian's words, the large size of the house is a "waste". And second and perhaps more important amongst those reservations, the Allardyces' aged mother will be staying in her room at the house, the Rolfs who are to provide a tray of food left outside her room three times a day, which Marian vows to take care of on her own, with no other members of the family to go into that isolated wing of the house so as not to disturb Mrs. Allardyce's peace. Upon their arrival at the house for the first day of their stay, they find a note ...
Up the ancient stairs, behind the locked door, something lives, something evil, from which no one has ever returned. [UK]
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Did You Know?
In the commentary with director Dan Curtis
, he says that he actually read the novel 'Burnt Offerings' years before he got the offer to direct this film. Curtis said that he hated the open-ended conclusion of the novel and, at the time, thought to himself that he would pity anyone who would attempt to make it into a movie. Ironically, years later, the offer to direct the movie version of the novel came to him, and the first thing he did was write an ending that he liked - the one featured in the film. See more
When Ben is kissing Marian on the lawn, after they emerge from the pool one night, blue eyeshadow appears & disappears on Marian's face. See more
God when it comes alive - tell them, Brother. Tell them what it's like in the summer.
Well they'd never believe it - it's beyond *anything* that you have you *ever* seen in your life.
There are centuries in this room, Mrs. Rolf... there are years, years in this house.
Oh yes, and this house will be here long, long after you have departed. You'll believe me.